Tesla Model S Could Get The Saleen Treatment
Saleen My Tesla? Please! Saleen Automotive, known for creating Lifestyle Performance Vehicles for road and track, is turning its attention to the vaunted Tesla Model S and the results (pun definitely intended) are electrifying!
It's not known just how close we are to seeing a full-fledged Saleen edition of Tesla's award-winning sedan but the process has reached the track-testing stage.
Since Steve Saleen, who founded the eponymous manufacturer of high-performance sports cars and high-performance automotive parts back in 1983, was on-hand when a couple of Tesla Model S's put rubber to the road, we can assume both companies mean business.
Exactly HOW a full-out electric vehicle gets Saleen-ified is anyone's guess, however, but any improvement on the Model S's more-than-respectable performance will be a bonus. The presence of a Bilstein truck at the test session leads one to figure some of the gains at least will come via suspension tweaking and finding the optimum wheel & tire combo.
Another area under Saleen's microscope is sure to be the Model S's P85 443 ft·lb (600 N·m) electric motor. Sven Etzelsberger is heading Saleen's R&D Engineering team with the goal of squeezing out sparks (with a nod to Graham Parker) above and beyond the motor's factory specs.
Once the Saleen/Tesla hit the track under the guidance of Steve Saleen himself, everyone in attendance agreed that EV need not phone home. The vehicle's performance stood out even more boldly when a team from TESLARATI brought their own, box-stock Tesla Model S out for comparison.
At the end of the day, the verdict was that giving Tesla's Model S an extreme Saleen makeover made a good car better... MUCH better. That bodes well should Tesla decide to take the logical next step and go the retail route, a path Saleen has successfully driven many times before.
Doing so will certainly boost the sticker price but from all indications, the boost in performance fully justifies it. (via TESLARATI and Le Blog Auto)